Talk about your fool's errand: The Racine County Democratic Party is asking Rep. Paul Ryan, R-WI, 1st District, to investigate the Bush Administration's interrogation techniques (i.e., what used to be known as "torture" when the other side did it).
Yeah, like that's gonna happen! Hell, don't the Democrats remember that in December, when the House approved a ban on waterboarding, Ryan voted against the legislation (which President Bush had threatened to veto anyway) -- somehow turning his vote into a call for more intelligence funds and fewer earmarks. (Earmarks? Yep, you read me right. See HERE.) If local Democrats wanted real action, they would have turned to Sens. Russ Feingold or Herb Kohl, D-WI, who have both spoken out against the Bush administration's use of torture in the war on terrorism. But, of course, articles of impeachment must originate in the House of Representatives, so ...
Rich Hinderholz, secretary of the Racine County Democratic Party, today sent local media a resolution passed unanimously by the party's executive committee on April 24, a resolution that Michael Shields, chairman of the party says "lays out a prima facie case indicating highest level Executive Branch officials engaged in high crimes and misdemeanors."
Shields writes Ryan: "Your position in the House of Representatives warrants your Constitutional obligation to conduct investigations into matters that may lead to impeachment. Please inform us in writing before our next general membership meeting to be held May 12, 2008, of your reaction to the resolution and your intended course of action. We anticipate your prompt attention to this serious matter."
The complete resolution after the break:
A Resolution Respectfully Requesting Congressman Paul Ryan to Conduct a Comprehensive Investigation into the President’s Decision to Permit “Harsh” Interrogation Techniques against Suspected Terrorists.
Whereas, The United States of America is a nation founded on the rule of law.
Whereas, America’s Constitution and its Amendments delineate the rights of those accused of crimes and prohibits cruel treatment.
Whereas, the nations of the world have adopted the Geneva Conventions which prohibit the cruel treatment of prisoners’ of war.
Whereas, America has signed (agreed to abide by) the Geneva Convention.
Whereas, news reports state that during 2002-03 U. S. Department of Justice employees issued a series of memos (subsequently withdrawn) justifying interrogation techniques some call torture.
Whereas, ABC News reports Vice President Cheney and the heads of the State Department, Justice Department, Department of Defense, and National Security met several times at the White House and authorized physical abuse of prisoners such as slaps and pushes, sleep deprivation, or waterboarding.
Whereas, on April 11, 2008, President Bush told Ms. Raddatz of ABC News that he knew of Cheney’s meetings and approved the harsh interrogation techniques.
Whereas, the United States of America’s Constitution establishes three equal but separate branches of government—Executive, Legislative, and Judicial.
Whereas, said Constitution provides checks and balances between the three branches to take corrective action when one branch exceeds its authority.
Whereas, Congressman Paul Ryan has been elected to the House of Representatives to represent the citizens living in Wisconsin’s First Congressional District.
Whereas, the members of the Democratic Party of Racine County reside in said district.
Now therefore be it Resolved, in consideration of these premises, the members of the Democratic Party of Racine County do hereby respectively request their representative, Congressman Paul Ryan, to motivate his Republican and Democratic Colleagues to conduct a nonpartisan and comprehensive investigation into the treatment of suspected terrorists held by or at the request of America.
Be it further resolved, said investigation to determine the:
1. Identity of the suspected terrorists, the location where they are being held, and why they are being held.
2. Actual interrogation techniques employed.
3. Reason the Department of Justice issued and then withdrew the memos authorizing the harsh treatment.
4. Identity of the government officials who authorized the harsh treatment, and the degree of their involvement in the decision.
5. Possibility of said government officials committing violations of American or International Law.
Be it further resolved, this resolution be forwarded to Congressman Paul Ryan.
Adopted April 24, 2008